Sunday, April 20, 2014

Glimpse of Palawan | Puerto Princesa

Puerto Princesa city
We arrived in Puerto Princesa city around 2:40 PM. My aunt made a reservations with green space hotel. It was white and neat but what i loved the most about our room was the balcony, it was so refreshing.

I don't mind waking up everyday with this..
You light up my life
Around 6:15 PM we headed to bakers hill to have our dinner.
They got a beautiful garden at the back of the restaurant so while waiting for your food you could take a walk and get selfies like this lol.
selfie pa!
We had salad with flower petals, Asian water crest with shrimp paste for short "kangkong na may bagoong", pork spare ribs, chicken barbecue and grilled shrimp. Yum yum!.
selfwe after we ate.. Burp!

Shrek and family
Next stop was Iwahig firefly watching Park, at first i thought that you could have dinner while watching fireflies. But the real deal was it's both on a different location.

Firefly watching is a 30-45 mins boat ride on Iwahig river. Distance was 3 km back and forth. It's my first time to see a colony of firefly. I've seen planktons too, i thought they were dead fireflies but our tour guide corrected us and he said those were planktons. This trip was fun because i was lucky enough that a firefly landed on my hand and stayed for couple of minutes. Maybe i smell like a flower. lol
That's a firefly, it was only taken from my gopro
By the way the boat capacity is for 3 people only. Plus they do not allow using of flash so its really hard to capture it by my gopro. I have also learned that fireflies lives on mangroves because they eat its flowers. In addition to that, i have learned that are actually thousand of types of fireflies. Honestly, I learned so much from our trip, Kudos to our boatman/guide.
We head back at the hotel and went to rest.
Going under in Under ground River
The next morning we woke up around 5:00 AM and took our breakfast by 6:00 AM, the van picked us up by 6:30 AM and went to the underground river's location. While we were on our way our tour guide asked for our IDs for registration purposes. By the way the underground river is 76 km away from the city proper so it took us roughly 1.5 hours. According to our guide the mangoes in Palawan is fest infested that's why they don't allow transporting of mangoes from Palawan going to other provinces.
Since it will be a long trip, our tour guide started to tell us on what we need to know on this trip. She said Palawenos speaks "Cuyunon" a combinatin of cebuano and chabacano. She also told us the things that we need to do for us to have a fun trip.
1. DO NOT LITTER - The Palawan local government is very serious when it comes to conservation of the nature. First and Second offense will be monetary penalty and Third offense will be Jail time (Non Bailable) so if you want your vacation in Palawan to be extended, you just have to liter 3 times in front of any officials or tour guides but don't you worry because the accommodation and 3 meals a day is provided.
2. Don't Look up and Say Wow - Once you enter the river, looking up and saying wow are the same time is a NO!NO!. Either you'll catch that holy water or the holy Sh*t which they call Guano (Bat stool) If it's your lucky day well congratulations!
3. Keep an eye on your belongings - The underground river is sitting on a rain forest, meaning it does have many enemels (Animals) living there. The place is said to be the hide out of professional snatchers which is the Palawan Macaque long tailed monkey.  They liked plastics because they think that it's food, so i advised that you bring your plastic friends here. Nah! Just kidding. They don't take plastic people. lol
4. DON'T BE AFRAID - Don't be afraid of bats because they are just small insect eating bats.
Before we reached the port going to underground river you have to pass by a zigzag road in barangay Bakungan, the biggest barangay in Puerto Princesa city in terms of land area but smallest in terms of population, the name came from big mosquitoes. Bakung Bakung means big mosquitoes. I wonder how big their mosquitoes are, jeez.
We stopped at jazz cafeteria in near Hulugan bay the name came from a tagalog word means drop off point in english because it's where the fishermen drop off their catch.
Around 8:30 AM we reached barangay Cabayugan which means a place with many bamboos, the location of the Philippine's pride, The majestic Underground river.  The said river is sitting under St paul montain. The Underground river tour is a little expensive but our guide assured us that all the proceeds goes for the benefits of the indigenous people living in Palawan.
I forgot what time we arrived at Sabang port - the port where we rode a boat going to the underground cave. When we arrived to the cave mouth, We wore our life vest and helmet then transferred to a different boat. It was a funny trip because our boatman/guide is cracking jokes. When we went Inside the cave they actually named different spots like the cathedral, the veggie section and the meat section because if you'll use your imagination you will see that the rock formations are actually looks like veggies, meat and saints. We only navigated the 1.5 kilometer of the river and it took us 30-40 minutes but according to our boatman the river was 8.2 kilometers long and you will be needing a special permit for you to navigate the rest of the river. By the way Palawan underground river was the longest navigable under ground river in Asia.

Around 11:30 AM We arrived to Sabang port where we had our lunch which was included on our package.

 12:15 PM - We are all done eating and we decided to head back.
While on our way back we stopped at Karst mountain, a formation of lime-stones,coral reefs that sticks together which took millions of years to be formed.

We also went to Ugong rock adventure to attend the briefing since we aren't decided yet if we will try the spelunking and ziplining. According to the staff the mountain top is 75 meters high from sea level. Our group decided to try the Spelunking and some of us tried the zip-line. What I did was the sitting position so i could hold my gopro but i was so stupid because i forgot to press its record button when the staff already released me lol. By the way i forgot to mention that the Zip-line in Ugong rock was still the fastest  in the Philippines, it will only take you 21 seconds for you to reach the other end but my ride what a long one maybe because i'm not that heavy.

Zipline 250Spelunking 200
Note: You have to do the spelunking too in order for you to do the zip, so all in all you need to pay for 450 for the zip.
2:20 PM - we head back to the hotel..
Before heading at the hotel, our tour guide gave us 15 minutes to buy pasalubongs.
4:00 PM - Arrived in Green space hotel
6:00 PM - We had our dinner at Badjao seafront restaurant. The place got relaxing ambiance. We were eating dinner while the pianist plays soft music. I suggest you should go there before sunset so you'll get a better view of the mangroves, the sea and the sun.

Around 8:00 PM - We arrived at the hotel. REST
We woke up very early because our flight is 6:00 AM but we still able to have our breakfast because they served it very early too.
What's funny about this trip was i totally forgot everything that frustrates me in manila. I forgot everything about work and feels like God pressed my life's refresh button. I am hoping that someday i will be able to go back in Palawan and i will be with my partner.
NOTE: All photos are mine - unless i put credits to it

Watch our Palawan trip here

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